Before he ever qualified for the National Finals Rodeo and earned two saddle bronc riding world championships, Taos Muncy was a young cowboy with big dreams.
He was just days away from his 20th birthday when Muncy won the intercollegiate national championship for Oklahoma Panhandle State University. Five and a half months later, he became just the third cowboy in ProRodeo history to win a college title and a world title in the same discipline.
Muncy made 11 tips to the NFR, and owns rodeo gold in two Montana Silversmiths buckles that he can wear. Now 35 years old, he’s anxious to give back to the sport that has brought him so much, producing the Taos Muncy Invitational, set for 7 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 20, at the Los Lunas Event Center, 24 Dalies Rd., Los Lunas.
The event is just 100 miles from where Muncy lives. Raised on a ranch outside of Corona, N.M., he still lives close to home with his wife, Marissa, and their children, Marley and Milo.
This is a chance to showcase to the folks in New Mexico just what the world has to offer as far as professional saddle bronc riding.
“I want to show New Mexico that there are a lot of talented saddle bronc riders in the world and still here in the great state of New Mexico,” Muncy said. “We are going to put on a heck of a show, and I am honored to be able to invite all of them.”
Muncy was in his second full season in the PRCA when he earned his inaugural trip to the NFR, then turned the rodeo world’s attention to New Mexico when he left Las Vegas with the gold in 2007. He followed that with a second world title in 2011.
The stand-alone bronc riding event will feature dozens of accomplished bronc riders that will receive an invitation directly from Muncy. It will also feature 10 rising stars, who will have an opportunity to compete for a chance to ride against the invited cowboys.
The broncs will come from Cervi Rodeo, a Colorado-based livestock firm that has been named PRCA Stock Contractor of the Year on multiple occasions. Chase Cervi, a two-time Pickup Man of the Year and seven-time pickup man at the NFR, will be in Los Lunas to help keep the cowboys safe.
Organizers are also in the process of forming an annual Taos Muncy Rodeo Scholarship, which is being designed to go to a New Mexico high school senior who meets the scholarship’s criteria. It will be presented by Muncy annually at the Taos Muncy Invitational, and organizers are still reaching out to others for financial help to help meet the needs of scholarship recipients.
“I was fortunate to ride broncs and saw how big it can be,” Muncy said. “I want to try to bring a good show to New Mexico and the younger generation so they know you can go somewhere riding broncs, doing what you love.”
Before the event, fans will be able to meet and get an autograph from Muncy from 12-1:30 p.m., Sunday, Oct. 16, at Smith’s in Los Lunas, and at 3 p.m. at Tractor Supply, 890 Bosque Farms Blvd. in Bosque Farms.
Tickets for the Taos Muncy Invitational can be found online for $20 at holdmyticket.com, or at the gate for $25. VIP upgrade tickets will be available at the gate. Children 6 years old and younger are free.
For information, email Kries Vaughn at [email protected].
Mike Powers spent more than 40 years as a television news and sports anchor, mostly in the Albuquerque market. He has won numerous awards including New Mexico Sportscaster of the Year. He covers a wide range of sports, including the Valencia County prep scene.